Monthly Archives: February 2012

Love

(For simplicity, the masculine pronoun will be used to refer to god unless to specify the feminine aspects)

As I talked about earlier in this blog, I was raised in a Pentecostal church. I was taught from childhood that god loved me, and even further than that, He loved me unconditionally. I was taught god lived in my heart, knew my wants, and could destroy my sadness. No matter what I did, god would love me. When puberty occurred I started to have sexual feelings for the same sex. It did not feel wrong, it felt real. However as we well know, most Christian churches denounce homosexuality and state it is an abomination unto god. This means that my innate feelings of love were considered vile, shameful, and detestable to god. God hated me for this and I would burn in eternal hell for such feelings.

What happened to His unconditional love? I become a teenager and all of a sudden my church does a 180. God’s love isn’t as unconditional as I thought. He loves me, but only if I don’t do this. That then makes His love conditional.

So why do I bring this up in a blog called “Love?” Through the trials of my life I have discovered something wonderful. I know today, that god does love me unconditionally. I believe that. My mother and grandmother were right. Not only does He love me unconditionally, but He loves you unconditionally as well.

As I was returning this past week from Pantheacon in San Jose, I had a very profound meditation. As I looked out of the plane’s window and gazed over the mountains, Netjer spoke to me and asked me to carry out this message. Someone out there really needs this right now.

I know that god loves me. I feel it. I do not doubt it. He fills my heart with His love so completely and offers it without condition. His love is absolute.

Some of these beliefs may sound familiar. Am I just carrying them over from Christianity? I don’t know, but if I do carry them over then Christianity has given me a wonderful gift. It gave me a god who loves all His children unconditionally. He does not place sanctions or limits. The only one who does is me. Sometimes I use excuses, such as “How can god love someone like me?’ or “I am not good enough for god to love.”

He is always there for us, closer than you think. I do not need to invoke Him, draw Him down, or call out for Him to hear me. He is here in this very moment, as I type these words and as you read them. He resides in the invisible reaches of our soul, every moment of the day.

I know there are times when I disappoint Him, but He still loves me. Sometimes He wishes I would listen more, but He still loves me. The gods love me. Netjer loves me a poor small man filled with anxieties and fears. There is no greater gift than this love that is given.

So when you doubt, when you are filled with sorrow and tears, when you don’t think you can take another day, realize that the greatest friend and love you can ever know is right there with you. Always.

“God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.” – St. Augustine

“May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love.  And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long ,how high, and how deep His love really is” -Ephesians 3:17, 18

Advertisements

7. Beliefs: Death and the Afterlife

I grew up in a semi-religious household. My father believed in God, but didn’t really practice anything. My mother and grandmother on the other hand were Pentecostal women and went to an Assembly of God church. As a child this was my religious knowledge. I was told two fates awaited me when I die. There was Heaven, a place where everyone lived in a mansion along streets of gold. Only good people who have accepted Jesus into their hearts would be there. Then there was Hell, a fiery pit filled with pain and suffering. In Hell you would be tormented by the Devil and his demons for all eternity. This was my first experience into what the Afterlife might be.

Before I go too much further into my beliefs I would like to say that I do not like the term “afterlife.” I am using it in this context so that what I am talking about is easily understand by everyone reading it, and it is a popular term we all use. What is it I don’t like about this word? Well, the whole “after” part. It gives the impression that this life isn’t important, only what comes after, and everything before is just bad prequels.

The afterlife is just a continuation of a part of us in the Unseen world. As we live and breathe here in the Seen world, we also exist simultaneously in the Unseen. There is a part of us that is eternally there. We can gain glimpses of it in our dreams at night. If we are lucky enough, sometimes through various rituals we can enter the Unseen as well.

Our culture does not like the idea of death. I have spoken before on this, so I won’t repeat myself. I have been a registered nurse for many years. I have comforted the dying person, been with people as they died, consoled family, and taken care of the physical remains. It is part of my life. It is part of my spiritual life with the Akhu and my father, the Good God. So I have thought about and mediated on my own death. I am not going to lie to you; the idea of death scares me. How do I know for sure that the essence of who I am will continue? The simple answer is I don’t. I just choose to believe it. It’s all based on my constant choice of faith.

The Ancients tell tales of treacherous journeys after death, obstacles to overcome, and finally judgment before the gods. One must be in balance with ma’at in order to pass judgment, or otherwise oblivion will occur. What awaits the transfigured soul is a paradise, a field of reeds, fertile land, and reunion of families. Doesn’t sound too different then what I discussed at the beginning of this blog.

What is important here is that continued existence is dependent on being in ma’at. We are eternal beings. Our hearts which hold so many troubles, disappointments, sadness, anxieties, hatreds, joys, and loves must not be too heavy with what we have experienced in the Seen world. Our hearts cannot also be too light, indifferent, or non-caring in order to find continuation in the Unseen. We must be balanced people. We must find a way to deal with the happiness, sadness, and anger which make up the emotions our hearts feel. We must find a way to be complete.

I do not remember if I ever told this before, but I will repeat here if I have. I once asked Wesir…

What is the meaning of it all? What is the purpose of life?

His response was simple and profound.

To live.

Our purpose is to live life to the fullest every day, every zep tepi.

I leave you all with a quote from the Book of Going Forth by Day which I frequently use as a prayer to remind myself of what I find important.

O my heart which I had from my mother,

O my heart which I had upon earth,

Do not rise up against me as a witness in the presence of the Lord of Things;

Do not speak against me concerning what I have done,

Do not bring up anything against me in the presence of the Great God, Lord of the West.